Name: Navina Mehta
How long have you been in Greenville? 4.5 months.
Most interesting fact about you: I am the first in my family of nearly 100+ people to become a physician.
Your background: I was raised in West, Tennessee alongside my two younger sisters. My Mom had three girls and she would always mention to us how she wanted each of her daughters to become independent. She claimed that we would get our independence through an education and so we all did. I really excelled in the sciences and leaned more towards the sciences growing up.
My two younger sisters and I are extremely close. The whole, 'education freedom' spiel that my Mother gave us throughout our entire life was also ingrained in my sisters. My middle sister became the second physician of our family and my youngest sister became the first lawyer in our family of over 100 people. My family is big about higher education. My family and I like to travel a lot, both domestically and internationally together. And of course, having two sisters led to the typical sibling fights, stealing one another's clothes, you name it.
I attended Northeastern University in Boston, MA and received my bachelors of science in Biochemistry. I had always had an interest in medicine and enjoyed the idea of having freedom to simply work wherever I wanted to within medicine while doing something fulfilling and super important.
I attended medical school where I had the opportunity to meet my husband of seven years. He is an anesthesiologist and at a private practice here in Greenville. My husband and I actually met during the first week of medical school and never left each other after that. We would then go to Kansas City, MO and complete both our residency and fellowship.
My husband and I have two children together, whom we work so hard for. Our biggest challenge, as two doctors, is the work-life balance. There is a 'Mom Guilt' for everything as a Mother, if I am working or not, or giving my children enough protein or not. I always ask myself if I am doing the right thing for my child with every decision that I make. This is something that I have struggled with over the past three years. My son is at preschool and our daughter is currently at home with a nanny. I work three days a week which allows me to spend time at home with our children which is something that I prefer. Sleep medicine allows me to have flexibility because it not too stressful of a line of work within medicine.
We spend a third of our lives sleeping and sleeping should be done right. The quality of sleep that you get is very important. I know personally that if I do not get enough sleep then I am pretty crabby in the morning. Training taught me that a lot of folks don't sleep well at night, either tossing or turning or simply not having the ability to go to sleep. If we don't get enough sleep then we are at risk of not being productive the next day, your job might not be at the highest level you could perform, or even driving. Even driving can be a risk, drowsy driving, where you have a hard time focusing on the highway.
It is important for me to look at patient's hormones as they need to be nice and balanced. Folks could have diabetes, thyroid issues, etc. and these two things alone literally change the entire body. My biggest piece of advice to would be to have folks ask themselves, 'how did I sleep last night?' when they first wake up in the morning. You are essentially asking, 'did I get enough of a good night's sleep? Did I allow my brain to rest?' It is a lot of self-awareness as our brain does a lot throughout the day and it needs rest.
Currently reading or watching: Audiobook of "Girl Wash Your Face."
Hobby: Barre Classes, exploring our new home town and traveling with my family.
We recently went to Caesar's Head State Park, Sky Top Orchard, Johnson Farms for their Pumpkin Patch. We are doing a lot of things that are coming about because of the season. We obviously love downtown such as different restaurants and parks.
Tagline / Motto: You can never be overdressed or overeducated
Who do you work for? Myself at Southeast Regional Sleep Disorders Clinic.
What is your day-to-day on the job? We start our day around 8:45 am and we do new patient consults, where patients fill out a questionnaire about what they do when they sleep. Are they snoring? Do they toss and turn? Do they feel groggy? Are you they taking a nap during the day?
Both talking and listening to the patient is extremely important as we are identifying patient pain points. We then talking about testing options, i.e., does this person potentially have sleep apnea, which about 30-million Americans do. We do a lot of home sleep testing, in-lab testing. Then we also talk about treatment and follow up.
We take all major insurance and if you do not have insurance then we work with you. We try to work with everyone, working really hard with everyone to ensure that you get treated.
How do you think Greenville would describe you in one word? Approachable
How would you describe Greenville in one word? Gem
Besides residence, where is your favorite Greenville morning hangout? We love heading out to Runway Park and watching the planes take off and land while eating some Blueberry biscuits from Rise Biscuits Donuts
Besides residence, where is your favorite Greenville evening hangout? We have 2 small kids, evening hangouts are a thing of the past (for now).